Published October 08. 2020
It has certainly been an unprecedented year – unlike anything we’ve ever experienced—with a pandemic gripping our nation, a movement to fight systemic racism, and numerous historic wildfires raging across our state. These difficult times have also given us the opportunity to reflect and rethink what is important to our community and how to best support our industry in order to continue to advance the commercial interior design profession.
Our collective minds can overcome any obstacles. Together, let’s continue progress so we ultimately come out stronger on the other side.
This year, we at IIDA NorCal are focusing our efforts and resources in three primary ways:
1. Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
We believe interior design plays a key role in protecting the health, safety, and welfare of the public. Design has the power to heal and bring people together. However, we must collectively take action in order to make progress. Therefore, we have launched a series of equity initiatives to fight for diversity, equity and inclusion throughout our society – and particularly in the interior design field.
Our Dignity, Equity & Justice by Design series of conversations is underway, bringing together both compelling speakers and lively participation by attendees. Session 2 is coming up on October 21, and I encourage you to register and participate in this important work.
2. Mentorship, Training and Resources
In order for our industry to thrive, it is critical that each and every one of us takes the time to inspire, teach, and mentor the next generation of professionals. For this reason, we are launching a new website and a virtual mentorship program this fall. Each of these are new vehicles that will generate opportunities for our community to connect and learn from one another. Mentorship, of course, is deeply connected to our goals of dignity, equity and justice, so emphasizing the creation of tangible opportunities to diversify the voices, backgrounds and talents of our industry will greatly inform all of these efforts.
3. Nurture the Culture of Innovation
Our industry is shifting as we have endured many life-changing experiences in the last several months. As designers, we’re trained to think creatively and to approach each challenge with fresh thinking. It is also our responsibility to push the value of design beyond our current understanding, in order to make a positive transformation through innovation.
Supporting these efforts is a fully redesigned website, launching next month, as well as our ongoing and proactive advocacy efforts. Despite challenges with the state’s legislative calendar that the pandemic has imposed, we’re forging ahead to ensure our industry receives the recognition and regulatory status it needs. The above work cannot happen without the continued support and involvement of our community. Please join us and let’s make progress together.